When It’s Best to Support Local Businesses

With the advent of Small Business Day, as well as many inspired messages to shop locally, there’s a big push these days to shop within your own hometown. This helps support local businesses, mom and pop type locations, and helps put money back into our local community here in Arizona. However, when should you buy locally and when should you buy elsewhere? Well, let’s discuss it.

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First off, let’s be a little harsh getting started here. Small businesses don’t always have the type of selection you’d be hoping to see. Plus, they can tend to be pretty expensive. While it’s great in theory, sometimes it just won’t be possible to shop locally for some items and purchases. A website like Angelique Lingerie stocks up on their costumes in bulk, so you don’t have to worry about it.

This is a great example of a purchase that would be best done online, where you have a better selection and better pricing. Now, that doesn’t always hold true on the pricing. Some local businesses and places are actually cheaper, due to factors like not having to ship something very far. Farmer’s markets are awesome for this reason. You’re supporting local produce, local farmers, and getting a great deal. My husband and I go at least once a month to stock up on his vegetables and fruits for his juicing. It’s multiple times more affordable and better product.

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So, when you need selection, you may have to go to a chain business or shop online. That’s just the truth of it. When you’re looking to get something very local (like produce), you can get the best deal and the best stuff by shopping very locally. When possible, it’s always a great idea to shop as locally as possible for the reasons we stated above. It helps your community, local business owners, and puts money back into your local economy. Choose wisely. The responsibility rests with you, the people.

Giving an Impactful Presentation

Like most things in business, there’s a set structure for giving an awesome presentation. It’ll take time to plan out for your own information, but there’s a template that fits well for giving the best impact (I used this same style for my ieee conference presentation). It’s not exactly new information, but we’ll be going through¬†the classics and adding our our twist. Let’s get started.

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So, there’s an old school abbreviation called AIDA. A-I-D-A. A is for attention, I is for interest, D is for desire, A is for action. This is the basic template that fits best for marketing, sales, and presentations. The first one is:

A – Attention. Getting the right amount of focus from your viewers or listeners is key. What can you do in the first part of your presentation that grabs your audiences attention? Can you ask them an interesting question? Can you tell a really amazing story? Can you give them data that wows them?

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This is huge at the start of your talk. When I did my talk, I asked my three friends what they thought of three different ideas I came up with. All three liked when I made bold statements and backed them up later.

I – Interest. Interest is also very important. It goes hand in hand with attention. What type of interest do you need? Well, it depends on your product. Or, the reason that you’re giving your talk. You’ll want to begin to get the audiences interest, even if this interest is just in you and the technology you’re working on.

Maybe you’re looking for funding, or are selling a product. You’ll want to attract, instead of pull¬†your audience in. Attract and gain their interest by providing great information, speaking with confidence, and this will be impactful.

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D – Desire. Desire is another piece of the puzzle that goes right along with the first two steps. Desire for your product, desire to know more about the technology that you’re working on, or even the desire to get to know you personally. This is best done by drawing them in, and providing great information.

Desire can also be fostered by setting forth things the audience can work toward by working with you, or investing with you. This may simply be the desire to help further technology. Or, it could be buying your product as well.

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A – Action. Action is the final piece of the puzzle that’s imperative to having a long term impact. When it comes to action, there could be a couple of different avenues to take. Would you like your audience to sign up for your newsletter to stay in touch with your company? Would you like them to buy a product now, at the back of the room?

You’ll need to tailor your message and the end of your presentation to account for the type of action you’d like them to take. When I did my talk, I gave them a simple URL to go to to sign up for my newsletter. I got about 50 new signups from this over the weekend, and they were interested in our technology.

Anyway, this template and these tips should help a lot in getting your presentation in the right format.